Granny Flats and Section 94 Contributions Explained

I noticed some confusion and question regarding the new 'Affordable Housing SEPP" and Section 94 Contributions and if it applies to Granny Flat Approvals; so I thought I'd better call the NSW Department of Planning today and get the latest info straight from the horses' mouth.

I spoke to Joel who is the 'granny flat guru' within the department -lol this is what the secretary refered to him as. We had a very pleasant conversation and he was very helpful..oddly enough, he refused to devulge his Surname but asked for mine. I gladly gave it to him.


He explained it clearly:
Section 94 Contributions fall under the 'Environmental Protection Act (1979)' and are enforceable by the individual Council- AT IT'S OWN DISCRETION.
The amount they can charged is set out in the abovementioned act, specifically Section 94, and each Council has their own 'Section 94 Policy' with which they enforce them, as they see fit.


NOTE: There is a current push by the NSW Government to have ALL Contribution removed as it applies to 'Secondary Dwelligs' (Granny Flats). The premier, NSW Dept. of Planning and other agencies are pushing for mums and dads to build granny flats. They want NSW to go from 7,000 granny flats to 160,000 in 10 years. These levies should NOT be enforced on granny flats simply because they don't necessarily increase load on the system. If anything, they relieve it.

So I rang a few Councils and checked their policies:
I'll add to these as I go along...there are over 50 Councils in NSW and they all have quite different fee structures/policies.

Campbelltown: NIL- for Granny Flats.
also, NIL for house extensions - if Cost of Works is under $100,000
0.5% if Cost of Works is over $100,000 etc


Ryde: NIL- If cost of works is under $100,000. A letter requesting the exemption must accompany the development application.

Byron Bay: Ranges depending on Zone> $10,000 for 1 bedroom, $20,000 for 2 br, $25,000 for 3br

Tamworth: NIL

Rockdale: NIL. A form must be filled in and ticked reason (The development is for granny flat housing).

Kogarah: UNSURE- seems the developer can negotiate exemption if the proposal is in the interest of the public or council's policies (Kogarah have a policy for granny flats called the 'Extended Family Unit DCP'.

Pittwater: NIL

Blacktown: NIL

Parramatta: NIL-for costs of works under $300,000

City of Sydney: 1% of Cost of Works (Thats $800 on an $80k granny flat)



I'll add more as I find them.

Brazen.
 
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Added. Its a bit vague (Thats why I didnt add Parramatta before) because of the definition of 'separate dwelling'. It may mean granny flats are exempt. If I have time tomorrow I'll call them and find out for you, nek.
 
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great info brazen.....

and I LOL that silly bloody govts have taken this long to wake up that granny flats relieve load on undersupplied under serviced towns, with rapid populaton growth. in fact, it is fast becoming their only option. The vast majority of baby boomers cannot afford retirement homes and outsourced care. Families are going to have to pick up more of that over the coming years.....but considering most households require two incomes, aged care is going to be severely compromised for many.

7,000 to 160,000 in 10 years is 36% pa growth.

makes you wonder who is going to build them, considering they aren't as profitable as new homes.

would be a nice quid in building them if you could automate it.
maybe we'll start to see grongers popping up in back yards = dongers for grannys :)
 
Brazen,
great post on a subject that recently has been popping up again and again.

Kudos to you.

How about the 10 to 25K that Byron Council wants? Poor granny.

So in Byron, the 100k approx that it would cost to build the 2 bed granny flat, would cost an extra 25% in contributions to the council............ ridiculous. I don't think that was what the state gov had in mind.

Just had a thought, I would build a 1 bedder with a BIG bedroom and divide it after approval. Save myself 10K and I seriously doubt you could get 3 bedrooms in the 60sq/m max allowed for the granny flat.


I must check out my local councils for the same info....Newcastle, Port Stephens, Lake Macquarie.
 
Just to let you know, Councils cant charge section 94 contributions without a formal s94 plan in place and some dont have them.

Also, in regard to the actual structure of these 160,000 granny flats. what a wonderful opportunity in the future for prefab housing. Being an architect as well as a planner, I have been following this with massive interest recently and there are amazing prefab strutures out there and I have been madly buying up every book I can find on the subject. I'm hoping that well-designed prefabs will become an important part of housing provision in the future. I'm even more keen to see how prefab housing can play a role in multi-unit development and even high rise development too.
 
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Just to let you know, Councils cant charge section 94 contributions without a formal s94 plan in place and some dont have them.

Also, in regard to the actual structure of these 160,000 granny flats. what a wonderful opportunity in the future for prefab housing. Being an architect as well as a planner, I have been following this with massive interest recently and there are amazing prefab strutures out there and I have been madly buying up every book I can find on the subject. I'm hoping that well-designed prefabs will become an important part of housing provision in the future. I'm even more keen to see how prefab housing can play a role in multi-unit development and even high rise development too.

Hi Savanna,

Yes, you're right they must have a S96 Contr. Plan in place. Every Council I've looked up so far has a 'S94 Contributions Plan. Know any that don't?

Pre-fab homes have been around for eons.

Opportunities are there for builders- as long as they know how to fast-track developments, provide quick & timely building services and remember these are NOT houses. The idea is to add value for minimal cost to the developer. Granny Flats aren't just 'smaller' houses. You need to remember that these need to be as cost-effective as possible. I've actually knocked back many builders because they think a granny flat is going to be a quick buck for them. Builders trying to make huge profits (as they often do with new dwellings) are better off leaving it alone.




EDIT: Just got a call back from Planning Dept. at Parramatta. Good news for you nek (see above).
 
Brazen,
great post on a subject that recently has been popping up again and again.

Kudos to you.

How about the 10 to 25K that Byron Council wants? Poor granny.

So in Byron, the 100k approx that it would cost to build the 2 bed granny flat, would cost an extra 25% in contributions to the council............ ridiculous. I don't think that was what the state gov had in mind.

Just had a thought, I would build a 1 bedder with a BIG bedroom and divide it after approval. Save myself 10K and I seriously doubt you could get 3 bedrooms in the 60sq/m max allowed for the granny flat.


I must check out my local councils for the same info....Newcastle, Port Stephens, Lake Macquarie.

Yea that REALLY sux.
Byron Bay has a huge median house price index- like $650k I think. Add to that holiday accomodation and you can see where B.B. Council are fishing. They want a piece of the pie. If I lived in Byron, Id want a Granny Flat to let-out during peak season @ $1,200+ a week.

I'd say hold out for a little longer if you live in Byron. I sense there's going ro be a general directive from the Premier's Office this year to exclude granny flats across the board from this ludicrous levy.



If you just call your Council and ask a planner "are granny flats excluded fom paying Section 94 contributions", they'll let you know.
Please PM me and I'll add it to the Council list above. Should be a good resource for ppl.
 
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Hi Savanna,

Yes, you're right they must have a S96 Contr. Plan in place. Every Council I've looked up so far has a 'S94 Contributions Plan. Know any that don't?

QUOTE]

Yes, the City of Sydney. They dont use s94, they have the City of Sydney Act whereby (under s61) they charge a flat 1% of the development cost.
 
Pre-fab homes have been around for eons.

But some of the pre fabs now available oveseas are "serious architecture" they are amazing !!!!. Closer to home, a good Australian company doing them are "Modscape"
I would like to be able to use good quality prefab/modular (with a lot of the work done off site) as a way of making a multi-unit site a cost effective build.

I'll let the forum know if I can source something that stacks up.
 
http://www.modscape.com.au/gallery.html

They just look like tin sheds to me, sorry.
Then again Ive never been a fan of those eco-modular kits. Most of my clients want a cute 'cottage' look with eaves, a pitched roof and NOT steel cladding. Maybe its just an Aussie thing.


Access to most Sydney properties (even with a crane) is quite restrictive and the savings (in my experience) are minimal for what you get.
There are factories that do prefab kits but they just deliver on accesible blocks (crane costs are HUGE) and walk away.

Let us know how you go. Id be interested if it was more cost effective (and better looking?) for my clients.

Brazen.
 

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That's a seriously small deck Brazen. Useless IMHO. I'm building a kit home at present and they are designed with 1.8m decks. Don't know why they bother? We expanded ours out to 3m - nice to accommodate a reasonable size table and chairs.

Thanks for the info mate. Byron shire is a nice place to live - but you pay for the privelige. There is no difference between contributions for granny flat and normal dual occ/strata sub. Hope you are right and they are forced to drop charges for GF's. :)
 
That's a seriously small deck Brazen. Useless IMHO. )

The GF SEPP allows 12 sq m for covered decks (attached to the GF) once you hit the 60 sq. m mark for the enclosed portion.

How is it useless? Its 1.8m wide opening to 2.5m wide for the foyer/entry area.


It's not a house you know...
 
The GF SEPP allows 12 sq m for covered decks (attached to the GF) once you hit the 60 sq. m mark for the enclosed portion.

How is it useless? Its 1.8m wide opening to 2.5m wide for the foyer/entry area.

Oh alright it's not useless :D Though I would much prefer 3x4m rather than 1.8x6.6m any day. Plus grannies do have families. And most of these joints are going to be used for everyday tenants with friends to entertain.

It's not a house you know...

It is according to the Macquarie and Oxford dictionary. :p
 
i was reading and article the other week in residential developer mag about "affordable" prefab housing and tottered around the various websites of the builders.

boy, they were expensive! even taking into account less holding costs during build and less onsite time, they were still dearer than a straight build and much much more expensive than a mobile home.

there must be a market out there for reasonably priced, "mobile home" look, prefab mobile home that granny would enjoy.
 
there must be a market out there for reasonably priced, "mobile home" look, prefab mobile home that granny would enjoy.


Lizzie, I soooo agree. I would love to come up with a nifty design that was interesting, cost effective and BCA compliant. I agree that most of the prefabs currently on the market is too expensive.

Its sad that more re-use of older houses, which are usually sacrificed in the "knockdown-rebuild" scenario, isnt undertaken. When I worked in Planning in the ACT, the amount of perfectly good former "govvie" houses that were being knocked down but could have been transported to the surrounding rural areas, was amazing.
 
Oh alright it's not useless :D Though I would much prefer 3x4m rather than 1.8x6.6m any day. Plus grannies do have families. And most of these joints are going to be used for everyday tenants with friends to entertain.



It is according to the Macquarie and Oxford dictionary. :p


hehe. I understand.
 
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